Friday, December 5, 2014

Researchers Design DNA With Completely New Shapes and Structures


The shape of DNA is a double helix, right? That’s what we are taught. Well, now the answer is “not always.” Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology have discovered how to program DNA so that it’s shaped like a bowl, or a spiral, or a ring, or a tile, or all sorts of different things.

It’s the latest in a string of discoveries about the underlying structure of life and the building blocks that make it up. We’ve learned that life might not even need DNA to exist, and a potential means to create life of that DNA-less nature was recently demonstrated when scientists created enzymes in a lab without the stuff. Then, you’ve got scientists who have been able to create new nucleotides (the “letters” in DNA) that do not exist in nature and insert them into a living organism. And now, this: DNA can look like just about anything. 

Check out these structures: 

For the rest of the story:

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